Former Rep. Michael Flanagan (R-Ill.) is a Washington lobbyist. He raises money from other lobbyists for congressional candidates he wants to help. When we talked on Wednesday, he was in the midst of planning fund-raisers for Rep. Gil Gutknecht (R-Minn.) and state Sen. Peter Roskam (R-Wheaton), who is running to fill the seat being vacated by Rep. Henry Hyde (R-Ill.). ***Of course the GOP leader most responsible for burying those anti-corruption reforms was Roskam mentor and Abramoff buddy, Tom DeLay. Mr. DeLay is facing charges of money laundering and conspiracy.
If Flanagan was not nice enough to tell me, there would be no official document filed any place that would indicate he was organizing fund-raisers for Gutknecht -- a 1994 "classmate" -- or Roskam. Federal disclosure reports call only for listing direct donations or in-kind contributions. ***
The Jan. 25 Roskam event in Washington developed after Flanagan got a call from Roskam's campaign manager, Ryan McLaughlin. "He called me and asked me for my help early in the cycle," Flanagan said. ***
Until [Jack Abramoff's guilty plea to mail fraud, tax evasion and conspiracy charges], pending ethics, lobbying and campaign finance reform legislation authored by members of both parties was buried by GOP leaders.
Well, so far...